The Patrick J. McGovern Foundation in Boston has announced a merger with the Silicon Valley-based Cloudera Foundation in support of a new initiative aimed at accelerating data and AI adoption for social change.
Under the arrangement, the foundation established in 2017 by enterprise data cloud company Cloudera will fold its staff, $9 million endowment, and $3 million in grantmaking into the $1.5 billion McGovern Foundation — a move designed to accelerate the launch of a Data and Society program, a first-of-its-kind initiative aime at helping the nonprofit sector leverage the potential of data science and AI. To that end, the new program will offer a range of sector-building data and AI services, including accelerator partnerships focused on equipping organizations with tools and expertise needed to extract actionable insights from their datasets; multiyear partnerships with nonprofits aimed at advancing data maturity; and public workshops, convenings, and thought leadership.
According to the McGovern Foundation, most nonprofits face significant barriers to using advanced data analytics, machine learning, and AI tools to drive their strategy, growth, and impact. And all too often the gaps in knowledge, data culture, and technical expertise translate into opportunity costs in terms of efficiency, impact, and ability to scale solutions.
"With the Data and Society team, nonprofits will have access to technical experts committed to the use of technology for social good," said Cloudera Foundation CEO Claudia Juech, who will serve as vice president of data and society at the McGovern Foundation. "We are prepared to meet nonprofits where they are in each of their data journeys and work alongside them to develop data maturity. We are eager to create and share a portfolio of use cases to provide practical examples of what’s possible in the field of data and AI for social change, guided by equity and the ethical use of data."